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During challenging times, Peoria’s next Catholic bishop asks faithful to pray for community’s COVID recovery

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PEORIA (WEEK) ---  In a couple of months, the Catholic Diocese of Peoria will officially have a new bishop.

Louis Tylka, who replaces Bishop Daniel Jenky early next year, is calling on the faithful to pray for all those impacted by COVID-19.

There’s no question many families have been hurting this year. Bishop Tylka is already hearing from them.

“We hear a lot. The difficult struggles that families are faced with,” he said.

He’s coming in during a time when the Catholic Diocese of Peoria is hurting financially because of COVID-19.

“There are some places there has been a significant drop off in financial support to the Parish. It’s been a challenge for all of us.”

All this is happening while trying to keep his flock together.

“It’s a challenge, no doubt trying to keep folks together. We have to look for creative ways to keep people connected,” said Tylka.

He wants to bring people together for a time of prayer. The bishop is hoping the pews at St. Mary’s Cathedral will be scattered with people Thursday, December 17, for a Holy Hour of Prayer.

“I really want people to have encouragement that they’re not alone in their struggles with this pandemic...that we are here with them,” he said.

After a rough year, Peoria’s new bishop is optimistic better times are on the way.

“Hopefully with God’s grace, we are going to see a real change in the near future. A healing in our country and our world.”

The service starts at 7 p.m on December 17. You can also watch online.

Amber Krycka

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